The streets of New York are more dangerous than ever, with the highest number of felony crimes in 15 years, according to new police statistics.
In 2022, over 170,000 felony crimes were reported, the most since 2006 when the NYPD first started sharing such statistics publicly, marking a 20.4% increase from 2021, when 143,522 complaints were recorded.
The alarming figures show that crime remains a significant challenge for Mayor Eric Adams and the New York Police Department (NYPD), despite their efforts to combat gun violence and subway crime.
While murders dropped significantly due to fewer shootings, all other major crimes saw an increase in 2022. Serious offenses reached 126,588, a 22.4% increase from the previous year.
This is the first time since 2007 that major crimes in the city surpassed 120,000. Criminal mischief, criminal contempt, strangulation, and dangerous weapon possession were among the other felonies not included in the NYPD’s Compstat report that also contributed to last year's tally.
“Things in a large city aren’t supposed to grow that much or go down that much in one year,” former NYPD supervisor Chris Hermann, now an assistant professor at Manhattan’s John Jay College of Criminal Justice, told The Post. “This is kind of like monumental kind of stuff... like once in a lifetime.”
Experts have warned that seemingly minor crimes are often a prelude to more serious offenses, such as burglary or robbery, meaning 2022 data serves as a warning for the city’s public safety.
Mayor Adams and the NYPD have blamed recidivism for much of the increase in crime due to the state’s controversial 2019 criminal justice reforms under former far-left Mayor Bill de Blasio that allowed thousands of offenders back into the community. The mayor, who is a former police officer himself, has vowed to boost funding to the city’s District Attorneys’ Offices and lobby Governor Kathy Hochul to do the same.
“Criminal trespass is always a prelude to burglary, which can be a prelude [crime], which can quickly become a robbery which can then quickly become an assault,” Hermann continued. “The misdemeanor assault becomes a felony assault becomes the domestic violence shooting... There has always been an escalation of violence with regard to domestic violence. Those things you know, certainly do matter.”
Meanwhile, Hochul has proposed a budget that provides $40 million in extra funding for more prosecutors and the same amount to deal with the discovery burden that has led to an increase in criminal case dismissals under the criminal justice reforms.
Asked about the upsurge in crime, Hochul claimed she is working with Adams to bring the numbers down. “I’m working very hard with the mayor in partnership to bring our resources to help keep crime down so people do feel safe whether you’re a business owner, someone walking the streets, or one of our commuters," she said. "Everybody deserves to feel safe, and that’s my top priority."